NFT REVIEW METAVERSE BBC Backs Startup Condense for Live Music in the Metaverse

The BBC has stepped into the metaverse with a £500,000 investment in Bristol-based 3D video streaming platform Condense. This will help to supercharge live music experiences through the New Music Portal, part of BBC Radio 1’s New Music Show with Jack Saunders.

The New Music Portal lets fans feel like they’re in the room with the artist by entering a virtual venue, a game-like environment for live performances.

About the Partnership

Condense, founded in 2019, has developed the technology to capture live performances using a rig of multiple cameras. The video feeds are combined to create a single 3D render of the event.

Audiences can experience these events as virtual avatars, moving around the venue in a video-game-like environment. This could change live music experiences, making them more accessible globally.

The investment will see Condense’s technology integrated into the BBC’s New Music Portal. The virtual venue lets fans immerse themselves in live gigs from artists like Gardna, Charlotte Plank and Sam Tompkins.

Fans can access the portal on their mobile or laptop, choose an avatar, and interact with the artist and other fans in real-time, making it feel like a community.

Innovative Collaboration

Nick Fellingham, CEO of Condense, stated, “This partnership positions BBC audiences at the very forefront of the evolution of what it means to be a music fan in an age where people all over the world can now come together in-game to experience live music. You can attend a gig with your cousin who lives hundreds of miles away and share a real moment with your favourite artist through the New Music Portal.”

Sam Tompkins, who performed in the New Music Portal in May, said, “The more that this technology moves on, the more we’re going to get closer to that live experience and I think that’s so special. This is a much more accessible way for people to hear live music and I’m all for that.”

The metaverse market is evolving, with the recent Apple Vision Pro headset announcement reigniting interest.

Despite some scepticism about mass adoption, proponents argue that 3D virtual environments will democratise live entertainment, making it more affordable and accessible.

Source BBC Media Centre

The BBC’s investment in Condense fits its wider goal of reaching younger audiences and trying new content creation methods. By backing British innovation and technology, the BBC wants to find new ways to deliver immersive experiences not just in music but also in sport, education, and news.

Jo Sherlock, BBC’s group rights and commercial director, will manage the partnership. The New Music Portal will soon offer more live and interactive experiences.

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